3 hours ago
Monday, March 10, 2014
If you have ever questioned why you are subjected to ceaseless bullshit whenever you watch television or read the newspaper you can most likely thank the tobacco industry.
Its goal was to erode public acceptance of the scientifically proven links between smoking and disease: In the words of an internal 1969 memo legal opponents extracted from Brown & Williamson's files, "Doubt is our product." Big Tobacco's method should not be to debunk the evidence, the memo's author wrote, but to establish a "controversy." Industries with troublesome products have ever since followed suit.
The Los Angeles Times published an article yesterday on the work of Robert Proctor, Stanford science professor and an expert in Agnotology, the study of the cultural production of ignorance, one of the world's great BS detectors. Professor Proctor, ever the optimist, has made it his career to push back against those filling our heads with nonsense. It is an interesting read.
Sunday, March 9, 2014
Saturday, March 8, 2014
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
In July 1945, soon after fighting in Europe ended during World War II, the British held post war elections in which Prime Minister Winston Churchill's party failed to be reelected. Suddenly adrift after years of wartime struggle Churchill was at loose ends. US President Truman invited him to come to America, at his convenience, after the war with Japan ended. On January 9,1946 Sir Winston and his wife set sail for New York, aboard the Queen Elizabeth along with 16,000 returning Canadian soldiers. The Churchill's arrived on January 14 and immediately set off by train for Miami, returning to Washington in March in order to travel (by rail, on US Car No.1 above) with President Truman to Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri.
Truman's aide-de-camp, Major General Harry Vaughan, was a graduate of Westminster College. College president Franc McCluer asked Vaughan to see what President Truman could do to induce Churchill to come to Westminster. President Truman thought the idea of bringing Churchill to Missouri (Truman's native state) was a wonderful idea. On the bottom of Churchill's invitation from Westminster College Truman wrote: "This is a wonderful school in my home state. Hope you can do it. I will introduce you." So it was that two world leaders, Winston Churchill and President Harry Truman, descended onto the little campus of Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. The National Churchill Museum is now located there.
On March 5 Churchill gave his The Sinews of Peace speech better known as as the "Iron Curtain Speech".
...From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the Continent. Behind that line lie all the capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe. Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia, all these famous cities and the populations around them lie in what I must call the Soviet sphere, and all are subject in one form or another, not only to Soviet influence but to a very high and, in many cases, increasing measure of control from Moscow...
Monday, March 3, 2014
Today would be the birthday of General Matthew Ridgway, the man who due to his exceptional competence was given every nasty job the US could muster in his 38 year military career.
|Commands held||15th Infantry Regiment|
82nd Airborne Division
XVIII Airborne Corps
8th US Army
Supreme UN and US commander in Korea
Chief of Staff of the United States Army
|Combat Infantryman Badge (General Ridgway is one of three general officers who have been awarded the CIB for service while a General Officer, with General Joseph Stilwelland Major General William F. Dean) |
|Parachutist Badge |
|Distinguished Service Cross with oak leaf cluster|
|Distinguished Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters|
|Silver Star with oak leaf cluster|
|Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster|
|Bronze Star with "V" device and oak leaf cluster|
|World War I Victory Medal|
|American Defense Service Medal|
|American Campaign Medal|
|European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal|
|Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal|
|World War II Victory Medal|
|Army of Occupation Medal|
|National Defense Service Medal|
|Korean Service Medal|
|Presidential Medal of Freedom.|
|United Nations Service Medal|
|Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor of France (1953)|
|Congressional Gold Medal|
|Order of Saint Maurice (Primicerius)|
General Ridgway had the dubious distinction of taking over General MacArthur's commands when Mac was sacked for insubordination.
Throughout American history we have been fortunate in having men of General Ridgway's caliber available when needed. Sadly, we do not always use them wisely.
Sunday, March 2, 2014
Happy Birthday Gents, thank you.